12 January 2020

Macro Economy

  • The Caixin survey showed total new orders and factory production remained at buoyant levels in November. Photo: Reuters

    China factory activity expands in November: Caixin

    Dec 2, 2019 11:33am
    China’s factory activity unexpectedly expanded at the quickest pace in almost three years in November, with solid increases in output and new orders, a private business survey showed on Monday. But business confidence slipped and companies...
  • A phase one trade deal between China and the United States may not take place until the new year. Photo: Reuters

    China wants US tariffs rolled back in initial trade deal: report

    Dec 2, 2019 7:54am
    Beijing’s top priority in any phase one trade deal with the United States is the removal of existing tariffs on Chinese goods, China’s Global Times newspaper reported on Sunday, amid uncertainty on whether the two sides...
  • Two demonstrators hug each other during a protest in Santiago, Chile on Thursday. Photo: Reuters

    Chile central bank to sell up to US$20 bln in FX interventions

    Nov 29, 2019 9:36am
    Chile’s central bank will sell up to US$20 billion in foreign currency interventions starting on Monday in a bid to stabilize the local currency after it hit a new all-time low, Reuters reports, citing a statement...
  • 'Get tough' trade policies are not a solution to the problem of inequality, Jeffrey Frankel writes .Photo: Bloomberg

    The case for old-fashioned tariff cuts

    - Nov 28, 2019 12:04pm
    The “bicycle theory” used to be a metaphor for international trade policy. Just as standing still on a bicycle is not an option – one must keep moving forward or else fall over – so it...
  • China aims to reduce administrative barriers, lower industry entry thresholds, eliminate discriminatory practices, Li Keqiang says. Photo: Bloomberg

    China aims to speed up reforms, promote investments

    Nov 28, 2019 9:17am
    China will speed up reforms to help build a market-based, globalized business environment, Premier Li Keqiang said on Wednesday, while also vowing to break investment barriers for all kinds of companies,? During a State Council meeting,?Li...
  • China's finance ministry sold the bonds in four tranches on Tuesday. Photo: Reuters

    China raises US$6 billion in its biggest international bond sale

    Nov 27, 2019 9:21am
    China has raised US$6 billion in its biggest-ever international sovereign bond sale as it pounced on the year’s sharp dive in borrowing costs, Reuters reports. The finance ministry sold the bonds in four tranches on Tuesday....
  • The ECB should confirm that it is not an inflation targeter and targets neither a nominal GDP nor a specific price level, says the author. Photo: Bloomberg

    Time for a review of the ECB strategy

    - Nov 26, 2019 1:15pm
    Now is the time to position for a review of the European Central Bank (ECB) strategy, which will determine how long-lasting the approach of its former head Mario Draghi will be.?Surprisingly, there are many crucial questions...
  • With China's economy growing at its weakest pace in nearly three decades, the revisions could fuel skepticism about the credibility of the data. Photo: AFP

    GDP revisions put China on target to double economy amid doubts

    Nov 22, 2019 3:37pm
    China on Friday revised up its nominal 2018 gross domestic product (GDP) by 2.1 percent to 91.93 trillion yuan (US$13.08 trillion), keeping it on track to achieving its goal of doubling the size of its economy...
  • China wants a trade deal on the basis of mutual respect and equality, Xi Jinping says, following a standoff with the US. File photo: Bloomberg

    Xi Jinping says keen to work out initial trade deal with US

    Nov 22, 2019 3:36pm
    China wants to work out an initial trade pact with the United States and has been trying to avoid a trade war, but is not afraid to retaliate when necessary,?President Xi Jinping said on Friday. “We...
  • Negative interest rates often seemed to be aimed mainly at achieving a more competitive exchange rate, which might well have been criticized as a “beggar thy neighbor” policy. Photo: Bloomberg

    What next for unconventional monetary policies?

    - Nov 21, 2019 11:19am
    The Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the central bankers’ club in Basel, Switzerland, recently conducted an in-depth evaluation of the unconventional monetary policies that have become the norm in many countries since the 2008 financial crisis....
  • US and other equities are trending toward new highs, and there is even talk of a potential “melt-up” in equity values. Photo: Reuters

    Why financial markets’ new exuberance is irrational

    - Nov 21, 2019 10:57am
    This past May and August, escalations in the trade and technology conflict between the United States and China rattled stock markets and pushed bond yields to historic lows. But that was then: since then, financial markets...
  • A US-China trade deal is still elusive, and negotiations may be getting more complicated, experts say. Photo: Xinhua

    ‘Phase one’ of US-China trade deal may not be inked this year

    Nov 21, 2019 8:16am
    Completion of a “phase one” US-China trade deal could slide into next year, trade experts and people close to the White House said, as Beijing presses for more extensive tariff rollbacks and the Trump administration counters...
  • The Federal Reserve's 17 policymakers agreed that pushing borrowing costs below zero “did not appear to be an attractive monetary policy tool in the United States”. Photo: Bloomberg

    Fed shows little appetite for bold policy change sought by Trump

    Nov 21, 2019 7:34am
    As US Federal Reserve officials hone their monetary policy playbook in preparation for the next economic downturn, it appears they will eschew more controversial approaches tried by other global central banks, including one that President Donald...
  • A file picture shows some industrial buildings in Ngau Tau Kok. Hong Kong needs to revive its manufacturing sector, but with select high-end segments, the author says. Photo: HKEJ

    HK needs to bring back manufacturing, albeit high-end

    - Nov 20, 2019 6:57pm
    Hit by months-long social unrest and the Sino-US trade war, Hong Kong’s economy has entered a technical recession and the prospects going forward appear anything but promising. The government has launched a series of relief and...
  • The People's Bank of China lowered the one-year loan prime rate by five basis points to 4.15 percent. Photo: Bloomberg

    PBoC cuts lending benchmark slightly, as expected

    Nov 20, 2019 9:50am
    China’s central bank cut its new benchmark lending rate on Wednesday for the third time since its debut in August, as widely expected, Reuters reports. The one-year loan prime rate (LPR) was lowered by five basis...
  • US President Donald Trump presides over a cabinet meeting at the White House on Tuesday. Photo: Reuters

    Trump: US to hike tariffs if no China trade deal is reached

    Nov 20, 2019 9:31am
    The United States would raise tariffs on Chinese imports if no deal is reached with Beijing to end a trade war, US President Donald Trump said, threatening an escalation of the spat that has damaged economic...
  • Analysts say the unexpected cut shows the central bank is keen to ease investor worries that higher inflation will prevent it from delivering fresh stimulus measures. Photo: Reuters

    China cuts key liquidity rate for first time since 2015

    Nov 18, 2019 11:37am
    China’s central bank unexpectedly trimmed a key interbank lending rate on Monday, the first easing in the liquidity tool in more than four years and a signal to markets that policymakers are ready to act to...
  • People walk past bricks placed by anti-government protesters to barricade a road in Central on Friday. Photo: Reuters

    HK economy expected to shrink 1.3% for the year amid protests

    Nov 15, 2019 6:20pm
    Hong Kong has revised down its estimate for economic growth this year amid increasingly violent anti-government protests and trade tensions between the United States and China. The government is now forecasting a contraction of?1.3 percent for...
  • Despite accounting for only about 18 percent of the global population, the advanced economies consume about 70 percent of the world’s energy, the vast majority of which (87 percent) comes from fossil fuels. Photo: Bloomberg

    Green markets for equitable growth

    - Nov 15, 2019 10:39am
    The climate crisis and the 2008 financial crisis are two sides of the same coin. Both were born of the same toxic feature of the world’s prevailing economic model: the practice of discounting the future. Protecting...
  • As the UK general election approaches, both Labour and the Conservatives are pursuing programs to boost minimum wages further. Photo:AFP

    A living wage for capitalism

    - Nov 15, 2019 10:17am
    At 3.6 percent, unemployment in the United States remains near its lowest level since the late 1960s. There are even signs that people who had previously dropped out of the labor force are being attracted back...